Close-up of the interior of an Eagle Speedster, at the 2018 London Motor Show

- Image ID: MPKM4D
John Gaffen / Alamy Stock Photo
Image ID: MPKM4D
Jaguar E-type Speedster, created by Eagle. It’s based on one of the company’s E-type Sport models, which bring the legend discreetly and faithfully up to date. Martin Brundle owns an Eagle E-type and drove out to Spa in it with David Coulthard. These cars aren’t replicas and you won’t find any American V8s crated in and stuffed under the bonnets. Instead Eagle takes an original 4.2 straight-six and bores it out to 4.7 litres to produce the required power and torque, thereby retaining the essential character and soul of the original. (If you want to modernise further still, then they will do you a significantly lighter all-aluminium straight-six made in the exact image of the XK original.) The suspension and braking are similarly brought up to scratch, reflecting the increased capabilities of modern tyres. At the end of the process what they present you with is the sort of E-type that you would hope would roll out of Jaguar’s workshops if they were still producing the car today. It’s a bit like what a modern Caterham Seven is to the Lotus original, although I think both Caterham and Jaguar would wilt if they saw the sheer fastidiousness of an Eagle. But what’s underneath couldn’t have mattered less when I first clapped eyes on the Speedster this morning. The utterly gorgeous shape is by Eagle’s Paul Brace, who went to work after a customer from Connecticut said that he wanted ‘something a bit special’ and wasn’t concerned about time or cost. Now, the E-type is one of the best looking cars of all time and meddling with it would seem brave verging on foolish, but to my eyes the Speedster looks even better than the original. You get the feeling that this is how Malcolm Sayer (the legendary designer of the C- D- and E-types) might have dreamt the car could look, like a flowing pencil sketch come to life…
Location: ExCel, London, UK